My (Involuntary) Shamanic Initiation

If you’ve read my bio, you might already know that I once considered myself “Germanic Heathen”. This came as a result of some very intense visions that I had. By visions I mean, I was fasting and had reduced sleep for at least a week or two, and had been listening to some music which had a lot of drumming in it, on repeat for a couple days in a row. Because I’m one of those weirdos that finds good music and then plays the hell out of them until they get boring. It’s known that shamans enter altered states of consciousness, namely the shamanic state of consciousness, by reducing food, sleep and drumming at a certain beats per minute. [1] Of course I was not aware of that, and accidentally entered a shamanic state of consciousness, completely not aware of what was going on.


The Shamanic State of Consciousness & DMT


In a shamanic state of consciousness, DMT is released naturally by the pineal gland in your brain. Your pineal gland is connected to the third eye chakra and contains the same tissue (cones and rods) that the retina in your eye does: tissue that is responsible for that actually producing the images we see: the light, depth and colors, that are then sent through the optic nerve and thus to your brain which interprets the image. Your pineal gland because of this is photoreceptive. (Absorbs light for a particular function.) This is why when you open your third eye, people start seeing visions or things that others don’t. The gland that is responsible for these visions are the same cells, connecting to the same organ/s that our physical vision does. What is seen with the eyes is *interpreted* by the brain which produces the image, not necessarily the eyes themselves. (This is why two people viewing the same crime can see two radically different persepctives.) What we see with the eyes isn’t necessarily how what is in front of us looks, but depends on how our brain is interpreting what is in front of us. (Digressing…) The eyes give us physical vision, the pineal gland, when active, gives us vision of the “unseen”, “hidden” metaphysical world that many believe do not exist. Of course, many of us can’t (or don’t) use our pineal gland and are walking around blind to a pretty huge layer of reality.

Now, backtracking to DMT: this is most commonly heard about in reference to drugs. Although it does exist as a drug, it is a naturally occurring substance in your body. It is, supposedly, only released when you’re born, when you’re dreaming and when you die. Many people don’t know that is naturally released when someone is in a shamanic state of consciousness. (or apparently if you take a lot of recreational drugs, there are man-made versions of it…) Natural DMT is (surprise surprise) found in the pineal glands of mice. (it’s safe to say it is there for us too.) This provides a more scientific explanation for the visions seen during a shamanic state of consciousness.

What happened?

I began to see visuals along with simultaneous claircognizant/clairaudient information. (My third eye and crown chakras were blasted open, obvs). I saw a muscular hand push my face into a well of water; I became aware that I was falling through this well. I saw hundreds of bubbles, each with information facts, events. You could say water “droplets” of information, even. I was seeing the droplets and simultaneously knowing what the information in the droplets was, and I gained new information with each one. I went through most recent times back to WW2, WW1, Victorian times, medieval times, pre-christian pagan times, back to the beginning of time on this planet, and even beyond. I found myself in space, hearing information clairaudiently from some beings that were with me. I went even further beyond space to pre-existence of everything: a void, or abyss. At this point everything went black and I saw red glowing symbols which I thought looked like runes, but looked a bit more complex. (I’d never thought about the runes or vikings since high school prior to this, so that ws new to me.) It seemed that I was specifically able to access information through my own bloodline and ancestors, from any time period no matter how distant. Information I received as I moved through the well was moving very, very rapidly- so rapidly that I couldn’t write it all down and had to sit and observe. I felt as though I could access any information at all if I wished. It seemed similar to what some call the Akashic Records. I was given a lot spiritual truths and information about the universe, life on earth, existence, etc. That I will cover in other posts: the information is way, way, WAYYYY too vast to articulate in one small post. It was so much information that… Someone might go permanently insane if they’d have access to all of that information at once for a prolonged period of time: so I was able to absorb some broad concepts to describe spiritual truths. (?) If you want to call them that.

wtf?

I know. Just so we can eliminate the obvious causes here: I didn’t and have not ever done psychadelic drugs, DMT, acid, mushrooms or anything like that. Defs not an acid flashback or something like that. I don’t even smoke pot. Also: I am frequently depressed and sucidal, but schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders are not one of the things in my family history or in my personal history. (Being a former self-injurer, trust me when I say that they’ve totally had ample time to make that diagnosis.)

It’s not schizophrenia if you can coherently explain it!

I’m sure that isn’t true for all sorts of reasons. (hah) I did seriously doubt my sanity, for awhile. But, if it *were* insanity, why would the truths I’d learned about the universe enlighten me more about it? And help me describe big concepts to other people? Why does the information I learned work as a useful framework for operating in the world? If I was insane, wouldn’t this not make sense to anyone else? Wouldn’t it render me LESS functional in the world? … I mean in some ways it did: I know things I won’t ever be able to communicate with another human and be understood, so I feel incredibly isolated. I’m often misunderstood. But the deep understanding of the universe that I gained really allowed me to understand it in such a clear way that I got very good at predicting information, seeing truth and lies, etc. So after it happened, I became obsessed with figuring out what had happened.

I couldn’t explain why, but I was incredibly drawn to maps of the nine worlds in norse mythology after this. It was a map to what I saw and learned almost. There’s so much information that can be gleaned from merely studying it. I started studying Norse mythology and folklore to better understand the allegories within it. Not many people realize that they’re not just stories: they’re allegories for certain things in the universe.

What I experienced was similar to accessing the Akashic Records, at least in principle. Interestingly, the Norns of Norse mythology *are* responsible for keeping/recording of the records of all time by carving runes into the Yggdrasil (world tree), catalogue anything and everything that has ever happened. The norns were said to water the Yggdrasil (or world tree) each morning with water from the Well of Wisdom, or Mimir’s well. (Mimir being a giant to whom this well belonged.) Every time anyone takes an action, it places a drop in this well: as with the rest of your family, “tribe” and race. Thus, the well of wisdom contains layers of information throughout time (Urd) all the way to the beginning of time itself. This well was also the well that Odin had sacrificed his “eye” to in order to attain wisdom. From the Abyss, Odin pulled out the runes.

After reading the mythology and lore, I realized that what I’d experienced could be explained through allegories found in the stories of Norse mythology! Carl Jung did believe that Odin and the other gods were archetypes latent within our subconscious mind. As I studied the Greek system of Hebdomadry (which the Qabalah was actually based on.) I came to understand these norse worlds could also be understood as spheres and the pathways that are latent within the subconscious mind. The Order of Nine Angles uses the “Tree of Wyrd” to depict these. The spheres can also be understood as chakras in the body, along the spinal column which is represented by the Yggdrasil (world tree). The difference between the system of Qabalah and Hebdomadry (to my understanding) is that the Qabalah views the light and dark as separate trees, whereas Hebdomadry considers them the same “tree”. I’m digressing though.

What happened to me was *eerily* similar to how Odin found the runes. My “third eye” (not a physical eye) went down the well of wisdom (sacrificing a degree of physical sight) down through the layers of Urd, back to the beginning of time to an “Abyss” (Ginnungagap) where I saw many secrets about the universe that were too vast to be described except but in symbols, and these symbols were what I saw in red. What Odin pulled back from it was: runes, which are describing forces of the universe. I don’t think these myths are just stories, but allegories, and should be reinterpreted and not taken literally. For example, I don’t beleive Odin only had one eye: the “eye” he gave to peer into the Mimir’s Well, the Well of Wisdom, was his third eye. I’ll cover more of these in future articles.

Genuine Shamans vs. Voluntary Shamans

I’m well aware that sounds completely insane. To meet diagnostic criteria for mental illness, though, the visions/hallucinations that one experiences need to be outside of the norm of the culture in which the individual lives. For example, visions experienced by Native Americans don’t neccessarily indicate mental illness as long as said visions are considered the norm among their religion. As I said, shamanic initiations ARE a biochemical process that takes place almost sporadically and is usually genetic. Unfortunately for white people, since many people are not aware that European pagan religions pre-Christianity actually HAD shamans and because Chrisianity has taught us that these topics (communicating with spirits, the dead, the metaphysical world, world in Norse Mythology etc…) aren’t acceptable or even real, many many MANY white people who are going through a shamanic initiation/shamanic crisis are falsely labeled as “psychotic”. Most of modern society simply doesn’t have a framework of knowledge for understanding these episodes, as we are so far removed from our ancestors and native spiritual roots. “Hallucinations” that can be explained through religious contexts, (even ones that are latent in our subconscious mind) do not meet diagnostic criteria for “psychosis”. I’m sure there are professionals that would disgree with me there, but I believe this is a HUGE blind spot in modern psychology.

I will link a great article in the footnotes below that elaborate on the topic of shamanic initiations. I agree with it wholeheartedly: the popular new agey idea that shamans can be “made” through classes and workshops is hog wash. Shamans are not “initiated” in the way that Wiccans, or other magickal traditions are. No one else can “make” you a shaman. A geneuine shaman is made through a spontaneous biochemical process that is sparked within an individual, often causing often times, “hallucinations”, or visions. This biochemical process is genetic: people who are shamans have had ancestors (maybe quite distant) that were also shamans. Genuine shamans are born, they cannot be made.

I’ll make other distinctions between real shamans and the voluntary shamans later. But, for a genuine shaman, this path is not an option. The spirits (or wights, in the case of European shamans) are forever “training” you specifically for the job, and they do not let you quit. Although the above story sounds like a great “trip” or kind of a trippy experience, the reality is that, you’re lucky to make it back with your brain and body still intact. Because of traveling so far back in time where modern language, concepts and schemas didn’t apply, when I came back to everyday consciousness (gradually over the course of months) I had trouble finding the proper words for things. If someone asked me to pour a glass of milk and set it on the table, I’d have to try and consciously formulate what it means for a table to be a table, what it means for milk to be milk, etc. Shamans going through shamanic crises almost always experience physical illness that brings them to the brink of death. Many do even die.

Genuine shamans are constantly in training and being given lessons from the spirits or wights around them. If you’re not on the correct path, they will let you know. … And not in subtle or pleasant ways. Unless I’m focused on spiritual growth, channeling knowledge and learning from them, my life goes to hell in a handbag. I’ve lost my home/s multiple times and was homeless. I’ve lost friends, family, and close relationships through both social isolation. I’ve had a number of friends and ex boyfriends die. I’ve gone into financial ruin. Had my health deteriorate. With so many of these things being taken, your “ego” and identity are ripped a part. Everything is taken away so I have nothing left but to focus on my studies. This is what Raven Caldera referred to as being “wight ridden.” (This word came from another culture although I’m not sure which one.)

Footnotes

[1] It’s true that some shamanic tribes use certain plants or substances to attain certain states of consciousness. Usually the people that bang on about having spiritual experiences by using drugs seem to also have an affinity for drugs in general. What you don’t hear many people talk about is the fact that these powerful altered states of consciousness are attainable naturally, without using any drug or plant whatsoever. As I’ve demonstrated in this article.

[2] http://kundalini-teacher.com/awakening/shamn.php

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